How to Choose the Right Air Canada Fare

Let’s explore the different fare options for flights with Air Canada, with a focus on shopping for fares with Aeroplan Elite Status in mind.  Let's also go over some considerations to keep in mind when booking with Aeroplan points.

Air Canada’s Fares

When shopping for flights on Air Canada’s website, you’ll notice that there are a number of different options at your disposal for tickets. You’ll pay a different price for a flight depending on which fare you choose.

Let's look at each different fare type and then weigh the pros and cons of choosing to book each one.

Economy (Basic)

Economy fares are the least expensive but most restrictive fares that Air Canada offers. You can find Economy fares on domestic, transborder, and international routes, as well as to Sun destinations.

There aren’t any bells and whistles with economy fares—you get a seat in a plane, and that’s about it. Economy fares are non-refundable, and aside from bookings to international destinations, you can’t retain the value for a future travel credit.

Who should book Economy (Basic) fares?

If you’re a price-sensitive traveller who just wants a seat on a plane, and you don’t care much about status or Aeroplan points, then this fare is right for you.

At the same time, if you already enjoy other perks that are included with your status or credit card, such as lounge access, seat selection, priority boarding, and free checked luggage, then Economy (Basic) fares could be right for you, too.

Economy (Standard)

You’ll start to notice a few more inclusions on economy (standard) fares, but they are still more restricted compared to higher fares. Economy (standard) fares aren’t refundable, but you can make changes for a fee that varies depending on your destination.

Your travel experience on Economy (Standard) fares largely mirrors that of Economy (Basic) fares, with the sole exception of paying slightly less for advance seat selection.

Who should book Economy (standard) fares?

Economy (Standard) fares can be a good idea for someone who tends to qualify for Aeroplan Elite Status through SQS and not SQM.

Should you have free checked baggage, Maple Leaf Lounge access, priority airport services, free seat selection, or any other perks through status or credit card benefits, then economy (standard) fares are a decent option.

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